Brother MFC-790CW Color Inkjet All-in-One Printer

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All-in-one printer have become very popular, especially since more and more and more people are working from home. These home offices need something that can do everything for them as space is limited to have several devices around, and with most home offices the computer is also their personal computer, so it’s nice to have a machine that does everything for business and personal use.

A little while ago I took a look at an excellent all-in-one printer from Epson, the Workforce 600, today for review I’ve got another, this one is from Brother, it’s the MFC-790CW. It’s almost as feature packed as the Epson, but the Brother has a phone built in, LCD touchscreen and voice messaging center as well, something the Epson did not have.

The Brother MFC-790CW is an excellent choice for the home office or small business that needs something that can do everything.

As usual please check out the unboxing video first and then continue on:


Brother MFC-790CW Color Inkjet All-in-One Printer
Model: MFC-790CW
Description: Color Inkjet All-in-One with 4.2” TouchScreen Color LCD Display
Estimated Street Price: $179.99

The MFC-790cw all-in-one includes an easy-to use, intuitive and interactive 4.2" TouchScreen. It helps improve your productivity with fast print speeds and 15-sheet maximum capacity auto document feeder. Connecting this machine to multiple users is easy via the wireless (802.11b/g) or wired (Ethernet) network connection. It comes with a built-in digital answering machine, full-duplex speaker phone and handset.

Main Features:
* 4.2” TouchScreen Color LCD Display. Easily navigate through the menu by selecting items on screen. Plus, preview faxes, preview/enhance/edit photos and view help menus.
* Built-in Wireless (802.11b/g)and Wired (Ethernet) Interfaces. Allows you to share the all-in-one to print, scan, PC Fax and access your digital camera media cards slots or USB flash memory drive.
* Digital Answering Machine.Holds up to 29 minutes of messages, full duplex speakerphone and corded handset.
* Fast Color Printing on Demand. With speeds up to 33ppm black and 27ppm color.
* High Quality Printing.With droplet sizes as small as 1.5 picoliters and resolutions as high as 6000 x 1200dpi.

* Unattended Fax, Copy or Scan. Up to 15-sheet auto document feeder.
* Send and Recieve Faxes. Hi-Speed Super G3 33.6K bps fax modem allows black and white or color faxing with or without a PC.

* Direct Photo Printing on Demand. Print photos directly from your digital camera’s media card slots, PictBridge-enabled camera, or USB Flash Memory Drive.
* Flatbed Copying and Scanning. Easily copy and scan books, thick or odd shaped documents.
* 4-Cartridge System. Only replace the cartridge that need to be replaced.
* Energy Star Certified.

You can view the full specs and features by visiting the Brother website HERE

Setting up the Brother MFC-790CW was actually very easy, with the Epson Workforce 600 that I reviewed not long ago you have to hook up the ethernet cable, configure everything then unhook it to use the wireless connection, with the Brother you can just input your wireless settings into the printer itself and you’re basically done expect for installing the software. This is a nice feature especially if you plan on having the printer setup some distance from your computer, with the Epson if you want to do that you’ve got to have a long cable or move the printer later tot he desired end location after the setup is complete.

Pop the CD into your drive and install the drivers and optional software if you wish, included is FaceFilter Studio, BookScan, Whiteboard suite and PaperPort 11SE.

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I already own a Brother MFC and I found the basic interface to be the same, with the exception that now you can customize it to your personal liking. You can use the standard interface or the flash based version, which is animated and looks more aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

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As you know the built in LCD screen is a touchscreen and I figured a video would be the easiest way to show you how it works and show you all of the options, so check out the video and continue on for the rest of the review:

Ok, well to recap the video, the quality or resolution of the touchscreen really isn’t that great, the pictures viewed are very grainy, and the screen seems washed out, not very bright and vivid at all like the one on the Epson Workforce 600. As I tried to point out in the video it already seems like it’s ‘burned in’ you can see residual images on the screen that don’t go away when you change screens, and I haven’t had it for that long, I can’t imagine what it’ll look like after six months or a year even.

It does work well though, I like the idea of less buttons and for most people it’ll make using it much easier. That part is very nice, it’s very responsive and works great.

Overall though I’m not impressed at all with the touchscreen, it’s the center or focal point of the device, the main user interface, and I think more work or design should have went into it to make it better looking and better quality.

I printed a lot of stuff with the Brother MFC-79CW to get a good feel for it including black and white, color documents and pictures. The first thing I have to mention is that the included starter ink cartridges will not last at all, you’ll be out buying more ink shortly after purchase. Luckily though I did check the price on the ink and it’s inexpensive, coming in around $10 for each cartridge at Office Depot. I got 12 8×10 pictures before I ran out of yellow ink, and the setting was of course on photo or high quality using the included Brother brand glossy paper. I of course used it for many other things as well, so I may have gotten a couple more full 8x10s out of the included cartridges but not many more.  The quality of the pictures is very nice, and they look great, I’d say near studio quality, and much better than other dedicated photo printers I’ve seen.

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as for settings there are the standard settings that you’d expect to find for the printer, you can make all of your adjustments etc though here:

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Here’s a picture of the Epson Workforce 600  and the Brother MFC-790CW printers to give you an idea of size:


Obviously the Epson is a bit larger, but they weigh about the same, and both are large and heavy really.

Image Gallery:
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The Brother MFC-790CW is a good choice for a small business or home office on a budget, for under $200 you can get a machine that will handle most any office activities you need it to do including voicemail, faxing and copying.

Of course it does have it’s problems, the included ink will not last long, especially in a business setting, you’ll be buying it shortly after the initial purchase.

The LCD touchscreen is one of the main features and it’s not that good honestly, the overall quality is just not what I expected, when something is the focal point as this is, you really expect it to be one of the best parts of the device and it’s not at all.

Well made
Full of features
Easy setup and use
Near laser quality
Ink is inexpensive
Built in phone and messaging center
Ink dries very fast, no smudges
Excellent quality pictures

Includes trial ink cartridges will have to buy more soon after purchase
LCD screen resolution quality is not good
Long print time for full 8×10 photos
Large and heavy


  16 comments for “Brother MFC-790CW Color Inkjet All-in-One Printer

  1. carla
    December 2, 2008 at 2:39 am

    cant install my printer…..need administrador password and i dont have it what can i do?

  2. Thee Critic GoD
    January 28, 2009 at 2:57 am

    Okay… I have played with the Epson and this by far supercedes the Epson Printer. I’m tired of Epsons, I had one and this printer is way more advanced, for some reason yours must be screwed up because at the beginning of the footage I seen you handling the unit pretty rough. Anyhow, it’s an awesome unit, stop nick pickin bro! screen…. lol.

  3. William Rutherford
    January 13, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    I have a MFC-790CW all-in-one Printer and I need the installation instructions. Can you e-mail them to me?

    William Rutherford

  4. Salim
    May 7, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    bought a multi function printer, copier, scan and fax 7420 within 2 years the motherboard blew the technician says have to buy new machine. very very dissapointed

  5. May 24, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    How can I get a Installation CD ROM for a MFC-790CW all in one printer?

  6. Charles
    September 8, 2010 at 3:17 am

    Can’t get to print in black. changed out all ink and still does not work. what do I need to do next?please help

    • HL
      October 30, 2010 at 9:25 am

      Hi. Did you solve this problem? If yes, how 🙂 ? I have the same…

  7. October 26, 2010 at 7:22 am

    That was a pretty awesome printer! Definitely modernized by putting all possible features in one printer.

  8. November 29, 2010 at 6:21 am

    That seems a really good printer. Great review!

  9. Anonymous
    July 1, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    Brother MFC-790CW Color Inkjet All-in-One Printer is one of the best all in one printer. It has best advantage is that it’s ink is inexpensive. But it’s LCD screen resolution quality is not good. It is inkjet printer but it is near laser quality.

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